California IndividualTax Forms and Worksheets 

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CA 540

This long tax form is for you if you are a full year California Resident and have the following filing requirements.

  • When a Taxpayer’s gross income is more than the amount shown in the California Gross Income chart for their filing status, age, and number of dependents, they have a filing requirement.
  • When a Taxpayer’s adjusted gross income (federal adjusted gross income from all sources reduced or increased by all California income adjustments) is more than the amount shown in the California Adjusted Gross Income chart for their filing status, age, and number of dependents, they have a filing requirement.
  • When a Taxpayer’s income is less than the amounts on the chart they may still have a filing requirement if they are children with Investment Income and other Situations, you can take a look at the CA 540 booklet for a detailed explanation.
  • When a taxpayer is married or have a registered domestic partner filing separately with separate property income, they have a filing requirement if they owe tax.

CA 540 2 EZ

This simplified two pages long California state tax form for residents who meet certain filing requirements are explained here. CA 540 2 EZ is the one for you if you lived in California all year, have under 3 dependents with the following income control.

Income only from wages, salaries, tips, etc.; interest up to$400.00; unemployment compensation (not taxed, but reported on line 10 of the form); and taxable scholarships (if reported on a form W-2).

  • Non-dependent filers- Income not more than $50,000.00 (single or head of household filing status) or $100,000.00 (Married filing jointly or Qualified Widow(er)).
  • Dependent filers with single filing status must have total income more than $9,361. Taxpayers who are MFJ or QW with total income more than $18,572. And head of household filing status with total income more than $13,172.

You cannot use Form 540 2EZ if you fit in any of the following categories:

  • You file a joint tax return and either spouse/RDP was a nonresident during the tax year.
  • You are married/RDP and file a separate tax return.
  • You have income from a source outside of California.
  • You have income from a source not listed on this form.
  • You made estimate payments or have an estimated tax payment transfer from last year.
  • You have Real Estate or Other Withholding from Form 592-B or Form 593.

Other than this, no adjustments to total income, such as student loan interest deduction, IRA deduction, etc. can be made.

CA 540 NR

If a Taxpayer is a nonresident of California and received income during the tax year from sources in California, they may have to file this form while a filing requirement arises. Some of the prominent filing requirement situations are listed below:

  • When Taxpayer’s gross income is calculated under California law and involves of all income they received from all sources is more than the allowed California Gross Income for their filing status, age, and number of dependents, they have a filing requirement
  • When the adjusted gross income of the taxpayer is more than the amount shown in the allowed California Adjusted Gross limit for their filing status, age, and number of dependents, then they have a filing requirement.
  • On the other hand, when a Taxpayer’s income is less than the fixed amounts, they may still have a filing requirement if they are Children with Investment Income or under other special situations when they are required to file.
  • When a Taxpayer is married or has a registered domestic partner (RDP) filing separately with separate property income, they are required to check for tax obligation.

Worksheets:

Non Refundable Renter’s Credit:

This credit can be claimed by California Resident who paid rent for their principal residence. This credit amount will be reported on Line 19 of Form 540EZ or Line 46 of Form 540.

If the taxpayer qualifies for the credit, the credit amount will be distributed based on their filing status as listed below:

$60 for single or married/RDP filing separately

$120 for head of household, widow(er), married/RDP filing jointly

California Dependent Tax:

This worksheet is used only for the taxpayer or spouse who is claimed as dependent in another taxpayer’s return. When taxpayer or spouse is claimed as dependent on another tax return, then their exemption amount will be added back to Line 16 taxable Income.

California Personal exemption for different filing status is listed below:

Single / Head of household- $108

Married Filing Joint / qualifying widower- $216

If Married Filing Joint, Only one spouse claimed as dependent then exemption amount is $106.

California Use Tax:

This use tax will be calculated only if a Taxpayer/Spouse makes any purchase from retailers out of the State where sales or use tax was not paid for using those items in California. Purchases made through telephone, over the internet, by mail or in person are also counted.